Asano Kaoru (浅野薫)

Kaoru ASANO (year of birth unknown - 1867?) was a Shoshi shirabeyaku ken kansatsu (Shinsengumi's organizational post for investigating movements of the opponents and keeping the Shinsengumi members under control) of the Shinsengumi (a special force that guarded Kyoto during the end of Tokugawa Shogunate). He also held the position of Fukucho jokin (assistant vice commander). He was born in Bizen Province. He was also called Totaro. He was a mysterious member of the Shinsengumi.

It is said that he joined the Shinsengumi around 1863, but the details are unknown. In the Ikedaya Incident, he belonged to the squad lead by Isami KONDO, and received an incentive of 20-ryo (old currency unit). He made a condolence song dedicated to the members victimized in the Akebonotei Jiken (Akebonotei Incident).
Until this moment, he had called himself 'Totaro ASANO.'

This name can not be found in any documents written after that, even in records of march nor in "Eimeiroku" (a list of name of the Shinsengumi) written by Kai SHIMADA. However, his name again appears documented as 'Kaoru ASANO' in the Sanjo-ohashi Bridge Noticeboard Incident broke out in October 1866.

He, who committed an indiscretion, ran away from the Shinsengumi and tried to be a member of the Goryo-eji (guards of Imperial mausoleums), but his enrolment was refused by Kashitaro ITO. He was killed with a sword by Soshi OKITA, when he was to return to the quarters. There are several theories about his death, however, the discourse of Juro ABE is the most reliable one.

[Original Japanese]